Statewide and regional business associations from across the Commonwealth have joined to create the Massachusetts Business Coalition on Transportation (MBCT). The group’s mission is to develop and promote a collaborative statewide business agenda for transportation to increase ridership on public transportation, decrease road congestion, and improve bridge and road conditions.
The formation of the MBCT is driven by worsening traffic congestion and increasing demand for more and better public transit, as well as the business community’s dissatisfaction with the current pace of improvements to our state’s transportation systems and services. While MBCT members represent a wide range of business advocacy groups and geographic areas, each with their own unique and complex transportation systems and agendas, all Coalition members believe that improving our statewide transportation infrastructure is an urgent policy priority, particularly as it relates to the support of business, commerce, economic competitiveness and growth.
In addition, the MBCT feels that the business community has a responsibility to partner with government on solutions, particularly when it comes to issues like public/private partnerships, workforce scheduling and applications of technology as well as sharing expertise on complex issues of financing, governance and management, contracting, and project delivery.
The MBCT will be chaired by James E. Rooney, president and CEO of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce (GBCC); Timothy P. Murray, president and CEO of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce, Wendy Northcross, CEO of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, and Richard Sullivan, president and CEO of the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council (EDC). A complete list of all participating business groups can be found at the end of this release.
The Coalition’s mission is consistent with Massachusetts Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo’s call to the business community to join the conversation on statewide transportation policy proposals and builds off of Governor Charlie Baker’s Commission on the Future of Transportation. In addition, the Coalition’s conversations around new revenues for transportation initiatives will be coordinated with the efforts of Senate President Karen Spilka’s working group charged with examining the state’s revenue sources.
“Transportation, and particularly public transportation, is a critical component to Greater Boston’s, and indeed the state’s, talent and workforce strategy, housing crisis strategy, economic opportunity efforts, climate resiliency, and our commitment to improving the overall quality of life for the people who live and work in Massachusetts, said Rooney. “It’s time for a united voice from the business community that can be a powerful driver of progress. I’m proud to work with my colleagues from across the Commonwealth to deliver results to GBCC members and work towards achieving the world class transportation systems that our entire state needs to thrive.”
“A modern and efficient statewide transportation network presents the opportunity to address the Commonwealth’s critical housing and economic development needs,” said Murray. The MBCT’s goal is to provide pathways including possible funding mechanisms on how to create a state-of-the-art transportation system across Massachusetts.”
“Cape Cod’s two automobile bridges and surrounding roadways are at the top of the Chamber’s list for transportation investment. They are not only key to our economic health they are critical to our wellbeing,” said Northcross. “We did not hesitate to step up and work with our colleagues across the state to advance transportation solutions. We know that when the rest of the Commonwealth does well, Cape Cod thrives as well.”
“It is imperative that there be regional equity in all future investments that are made to our transportation system, said Sullivan. “There needs to be an appreciation for the regional differences and needs of our residents and our businesses. The definition of transportation infrastructure needs to expand beyond just roads and bridges to include broadband, internet and wifi investments so that the less populated regions of the state can take advantage of new technologies, uber-like solutions, and innovative solutions to transportation.”
About the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce
We are the convener, voice and advocate of our region’s business community, committed to making Greater Boston the best place for businesses and people to thrive. We help our members and Greater Boston succeed by convening and connecting the business community; researching, developing and advocating for public policies that contribute to our region’s economic success; and providing comprehensive leadership development programs designed to grow strong business and civic leaders.
About the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce
The Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce is a 1,206-member organization that advocates on behalf of business to strengthen and promote regional economic vitality, while addressing related cultural, environmental and community concerns.
About the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
The Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce is the largest Chamber in New England serving more than 2,200 members in 35 cities and towns in Central Massachusetts through its affiliation with 5 Chamber partners: Auburn, Blackstone Valley, Central Mass South, Wachusett Area and Webster Dudley Oxford. In partnership with our members, affiliate chambers, and network of stakeholders, the Chamber is advancing a “Recruit, Retain and Incubate” agenda to grow the region’s business community and jobs, nurture a trained and qualified workforce, and create a desirable region in which to live and work.
About the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council
The Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts (EDC) is a private, non-profit corporation providing resources and information to businesses operating in or entering the region by aiding in expansion, relocation and networking. Our mission is to improve the region through the creation of quality jobs and enhanced public and private investment.